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Sudden decline


Registered User
Jul 4, 2012

I posted a bit of an angry rant a few months ago because I was so fed up with my mum’s dementia. Sadly, things have since got a lot worse.

She got hit by a series of UTI infections in December, and she’s now been in hospital for about 6 weeks.

Before this, her dementia was pretty advanced but she was generally ok; her mobility was good, she could talk (even if what she said rarely made sense) and she seemed fairly physically healthy. Now she’s completely bed bound, she can’t speak, her muscles have pretty much wasted away and she can’t move at all. It’s horrendous, to be honest.

I’m currently waiting for Social Services to call in order to arrange (yet another) meeting to discuss next steps, as the hospital needs the bed. The doctors have said that the UTIs have basically accelerated the dementia, and that she’s unlikely to improve. But they can’t say how long she might have left, as although she can’t do it herself she will eat and drink if someone does it for her.

I’m just shocked at how quickly she’s deteriorated - it’s all a bit surreal. All those things that I was complaining about before seem like a very distant memory now.

Has anyone else experienced such a sudden decline?

Thank you


Registered User
Apr 8, 2012
I do feel a lot of this is down to the treatment that patients with AD get in hospital. There is an old adage and that is if you dont use it , you lose it. Same can be said if you are left in bed , you just waste away because your muscles are not getting the exercise they need. I do feel so sorry for you. Our Mum is 95 and very frail but then frailty at that time of life is normal. She also spends a lot of time in bed but the staff at the residential care home make sure she gets up for meals and she is encouraged to walk to the dining room and back.

I feel if your Mum was in a Care Home she would soon be up and about again as they tackle UTIs all if the time. So as much as you probably dont want to , do try and get your Mum into care because that is what she needs. I know what it is like to look into my Mum's eyes and just see black pools of nothing and yet another day , the old blue eyes are back and so is Mum, so dont give up hope please and yes if fed correctly Mum will soon put her weight back on again.


Registered User
Mar 13, 2012
From what little I know about hospitalisation of the elderly (with or without dementia) such an extended stay can result in a deterioration of all kinds of aspects from mobility to cognitive function. That's why it's always best to keep the elderly out of hospital although sometimes that just isn't an option. Be firm with social services about support packages on discharge. These will be critical for your mum's well being


Registered User
Oct 18, 2013
British Isles
My Mum is in a care home but suffered a similar decline in December. Almost overnight became totally doubly incontinent and has to be spoonfed pureed food and often has to be coaxed to swallow. Previous day, despite already having the infection and having started antibiotics, she had been out for lunch and was still mobile and had no need of an incontinence pad.

Myself and carers tried our hardest to maintain her mobility but she had become scared of standing. She is now even frightened when being adjusted to sit straighter when she slumps to the side of the bed or chair.

I do hope that your Mum can be helped by the right care home and I sympathise with your shock at her decline.

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